The Solanum

by Kevin T McEneaney

   In memory of Nikolai Vavilov


During the dreadful siege of Leningrad,

scientists willingly starved themselves to death

rather than eat edible tuber seeds

stored in the Solanum near Petersburg

because this collection belonged to all

children of the earth around the whole globe.


This genetic collection with over

a thousand strains of sundry strawberries,

over hundred strains of gooseberries,

cherries, cranberries, fruits, and raspberries

at Pavlovsk Station was nearly killed

by land developers for private homes.


Humanity: a breed concurrently

heroic, as it is foolish silly. 


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